Monday, September 23, 2013

And So the Rotation will be Abandoned

I want to thank you so very much for your kind words, prayers, and thoughts for my ladies generally and specifically. They're a fabulous bunch, and I don't know what I'd do without them.

Under ordinary circumstances on Friday, I would have written to tell you how nice it was to learn that you all underestimate your stitching time too, but Friday did not bring ordinary circumstances. Still, it is nice to know that I'm not the only one who thinks she can knock out a project or two in a minute and a half only to find it takes days and weeks longer than I thought.

Which brings me to my rotation and this month's ornament stitchalong. This one was brought to me by Chelle a million and one years ago (or maybe seven). Chelle's stitching group made kits for each other from the JCO issue. And she sent this one to me as a RAK via a friend of hers who brought it to me at stitching camp, before it was widely known that I blog under a pseudonym. The poor friend was looking for Anna, who had reported on her blog that she would be at camp, but there was no Anna to be found on any list. My best pal overheard her and told her she could introduce her to Anna. And I ended up with a kit that I saved just for this ornament stitchalong.

An ornament. You should be able to stitch that in three days, right? Well not this ornament (over one!) and not these three days. Friday was all teary and then I had to pull myself together to go with some friends to the Greek fair. On Saturday, I did get to stitching (see below). When dinnertime rolled around, we couldn't think of a thing to eat so we went back to the fair and had gyros. Sunday found us making chili to enter into the library's chili cook-off. And boy-howdy that was work!

We are testing a stove for a company. It has an induction cooktop, which requires special(ish) cookware. (It needs to be magnetic like cast iron, enamel, or some stainless). When they put in the oven, they gave us some cookware for it. But the biggest pot they gave us was like 5 quarts. Having been roped in to the cook-off volunteered, we both had to make two gallons of chili. I went out and got an eight quart pot, but just the one since this is probably the only time we will need two. The plan was I would make my chili using the new pot and transfer it to another pot and put it inside the oven to stay warm, and then the dude would use the new pot to make his chili.

I started cooking, and that's when I found out that none of the pots and pans they gave us are particularly large. In order to maintain quality control, I decided to triple my recipe by cooking it three times--and adding each to the new pot--rather than making one big batch, and a good thing too! I had to brown two pounds of beef then add other ingredients. None of the pans were large enough, and the "large" pot they gave us wasn't squat like a dutch oven, so it was keeping in a lot of moisture. I cook a lot by feel and changing the temperatures on this stovetop is difficult. (It's all digital. You need to make sure you and the computer are on the same page about which burner you're talking about. Why are there no knobs?!) I was, to put it mildly, growing increasingly frustrated. I finally got my chili made, shifted pots and...the oven gave me the message, "that function is not available." Are you effing kidding me? I am up to my elbows in chili, we are two hours from the cook-off, and the oven isn't going to work?!?! Fortunately, my neighbor let me borrow his stove, which is gas, and doesn't care what kind of cookware you are using.

And then we didn't even win.

But you can see why I didn't get as much stitched on this piece as I would have liked.


Needle Nicely said...

No knobs? Not that I'm so great at turning on the right one. I'd never make it on an induction stovetop.

And please remember my mantra (which I remind myself of when I want to be done with something) "Stitching is not a contest, it's a process. Relax."

valerie said...

Wow, what drama for the cookoff! Isn't new fangled gadgets supposed to make things easier and yet technology can be trying at times. Sorry you didn't win but I am sure the chili was yummy! Now to stitch.

Andrea said...

Tried to comment on your last post but for some reason, blogger or google wouldn't let me, hope it works this time. Really sorry about your friends, I can tell how much you care for them.

That stove/oven sounds like a major PITA. I feel that way about the new washer and dryers. When it was time for new ones a few years back, we got the "old fashioned" kind with three cycles and a knob. I do not need anything to make laundry any more miserable than it already is.

Sorry you didn't win the cookoff.

Annemarie said...

I'm sorry for laughing at your misery, but I could just picture you up to your elbows in chili, and then finding out the oven won't co-operate. Still... lesson learned, right? And now you can continue with your ornament.

BTW, that's why I don't like these small projects: you always think you'll be finished in a couple of hours, and you never are. Give me big projects every time: at least I KNOW they will never get finished.

diamondc said...

You know Nikki someday there will be a stove that will gather all the ingredients and put them together for you and maybe eat it, wow I am 63 I have seen t.v. go from an almost round picture tube to the monstrous thing we have hanging on the wall in the family room, now a stove without knobs come on now I do like to cook and I like to control everything that I do in the kitchen.
Giggles and more giggles.

Charlene ♥ SC said...

Don't know what I would do if I ever lived where gas wasn't available! A lot less cooking for sure - which could be none! Guess those magnetic pots can't be stirred with metal utensils, either?? Yeah, I'll be stitching while someone else does the cooking... Hope you have given the stove a failing grade!

Tessa said...

I love your tiny red stitches on that beautiful coloured linen.
Well done for persevering with your chilli making - you could have given up so A+ for effort :)

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

mmmm, raw chilli!! Mine would either be raw or burned. There is no inbetween.
I have been running a Toddler group for ten years now and have never once made the teas and coffees. I am bizarrely proud of my "cookery" avoidance skills.

Daffycat said...

Gasp, give me a gas range and oven any day. I adore the instant on and off and the fast change in temperature if something's bubbling too hard. No knobs? WTH? And what would you do during potluck?

Daffycat said...

Damn, and chili sounds great. I must be hungry...

Jennifer said...

We just got FIOS and the guide and on demand menus enrage me. I probably would have lost it over the stove. We have an electric one and I hate it - I'm pretty sure an induction one would send me over the edge. I don't care what it costs, when this one goes, I am getting a gas stove.